There’s been an undeniable trend on Broadway over the last couple of years, maybe a decade, for those who are unaware (I assume that’s about 99.9998% of you). That trend is to take popular (and I can’t stress how loosely I use that word) films and turn them into stage musicals. Sometimes the films are chosen because music or dance is already a big part of their plot. “Billy Elliot” was turned into a successful and well reviewed musical, albeit one I have no interest in seeing. Adam Sandler’s “The Wedding Singer” was also converted to a musical. Literally nothing sounds good about that. I’d rather watch a Tijuana donkey show in which I’m forcibly brought up onstage as a “volunteer” than go see “The Wedding Singer” musical.
There are other musical incarnations of movies that are equally terrible. “Legally Blonde” comes to mind as a wholly pointless and miserable way to spend three hours and too much money. I’d rather get drunk in the alley behind the theater than go in and watch “Legally Blonde” the musical. Besides, that alley would be a blast. Do you know how many hobos you could get to fight each other with the kind of money you’d be paying to see a Broadway show? Five! Five hobos! That sounds like a small number but keep in mind that everything is more expensive in New York.
What I’m basically getting at is that most of these musicals that are based on movies end up being absolute garbage. These musicals are hasty, poorly written excuses to make money, which I assume is why someone out there decided to make an Adam Sandler movie into a musical in the first place, it was easily convertible. There are exceptions of course. Monty Python’s “Spamalot” was funny, but the list of quality movie based musicals (especially movies that weren’t ALREADY musicals, like “The Lion King”) is short.
This is why I’m pretty unhappy to hear the news that the brilliant, timeless fraternity comedy “Animal House” is slated to become a musical. Now, I have no problems with musicals in general. There are some brilliant musicals out there. There’s “The Book of Mormon” for example. I would take a point blank rubber bullet to the taint for tickets to that. In fact “The Book of Mormon” is sold out for so long that punishing myself with riot weapons might be the only actual way to see that show this decade.
The difference is that a show like “The Book of Mormon” was original, and written for the stage, and written by three brilliant men. “Animal House” is going to have its screenplay dissected and retooled by someone who A) isn’t as funny as the original writers and B) almost certainly was not in a fraternity. Not off to a great start. In fact the only good thing I’ve read about this proposed musical adaptation so far is that Casey Nicholaw, the man who directed “The Book of Mormon”, will direct the “Animal House” musical.
However that’s the only good news, and the bad news far outweighs it. The people tasked to score “Animal House” are none other than… well… it’s too horrible to write, just see for yourself…
Yeah, that’s right, motherfucking Bare Naked Ladies has been asked to write the music for the “Animal House” musical.
(*Stands up from desk, punches drywall*)
Bare Naked Ladies…
(*Screams for the intern*)
A band whose edginess rates somewhere between Smash Mouth and an iCarly episode that was too hot to air…
(*Throws intern through drywall, has an angry cry*)
This is going to be awful.
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